[Note: Shared for #AutisticHistory archive purposes. This is NOT An Autistic Ally.]
KCTV: A Tale Of 2 States
April 03, 2013
PRAIRIE VILLAGE (April 3, 2013) — KCTV Reporter Erika Tallon reports on the phenomenon of Missouri kids, whose state requires autism insurance coverage, crossing the border to Prairie Village in Kansas, which does not require coverage, to get ABA treatment. Mike Wasmer, Autism Speaks associate director of state government affairs, was interviewed.
Group helps Kansas families deal with autism
Posted: Apr 02, 2013 6:41 AM CUTUpdated: Apr 16, 2013 6:56 AM CUT
PRAIRIE VILLAGE, KS (KCTV) –
More children are being diagnosed with autism because awareness is increasing, and support for treatment is also increasing in most states – except for Kansas. However, local groups are working to change that.
The disorder affects one in 88 school children, and every 20 minutes a child is diagnosed with autism.
While there is no cure for children with autism, experts agree that early intervention is key. But affording the therapy is where many families hit a wall, especially in Kansas where health insurance denies them full coverage.
Just a year and a half ago, 4-year-old Chloe wasn’t talking. One-on-one training at Kansas City Autism Training Center has drastically improved her social skills.
“The price range is pretty high,” agency coordinator Jenny Regan said.
The full-time student getting 35 hours of therapy a week would cost the family $70,000 each year. And families are turning to extremes to give their children a chance.
“We’ve had parents who have taken out second mortgages on their homes. We’ve had parents who’ve tried to join the military to get military insurance. We’ve had families relocate to the Missouri side. We’ve had families who have asked friends and family for financial support so they can enroll in programs like this,” Regan said.
Most of the students live in Missouri, even though the center is in Prairie Village, KS.
They can afford the treatment because Missouri mandates that insurance companies cover behavioral therapy for children with autism. It is one of 31 states that does. Kansas does not.
“So without means to pay for that out of pocket, the child will only receive a fraction of the prescribed therapy or go without therapy at all,” said Mike Wasmer with the Autism Speaks organization, which filed two bills in the Kansas House this session.
Neither bill made it to a hearing.
“What it would do would provide access to life-changing treatments to children with autism,” Wasmer said.
An estimated 8,500 children in Kansas have autism. According to Autism Speaks, if treated early, half of them will be able to go to school with their peers by first grade. Another 42 percent will improve so that they need less special education in grades K-12.
It would save the state about $3.2 million in disability costs for the lifespan of the child and only cost the state 26 cents per member, per month.
“It is not only a moral imperative this be done because this is a medically necessary treatment that’s being withheld from our children, but it’s also a fiscal imperative for Kansas to do,” Wasmer said.
Advocates urge people to contact their legislators, share their stories and ask them to support autism insurance in Kansas.
KCTV5 reached out to Kansas Speaker of the House Ray Merrick to find out why he kept the bill from moving forward. He has yet to respond.
The Autism Community Is Not The Autistic Community
Autistic people have fought the inclusion of ABA in therapy for us since before Autism Speaks, and other non-Autistic-led autism organizations, started lobbying legislation to get it covered by insurances and Medicaid.
ABA is a myth originally sold to parents that it would keep their Autistic child out of an institution. Today, parents are told that with early intervention therapy their child will either be less Autistic or no longer Autistic by elementary school, and can be mainstreamed in typical education classes. ABA is very expensive to pay out of pocket. Essentially, Autism Speaks has justified the big price tag up front will offset the overall burden on resources for an Autistic’s lifetime. The recommendation for this therapy is 40 hours a week for children and toddlers.
The original study that showed the success rate of ABA to be at 50% has never been replicated. In fact, the study of ABA by United States Department of Defense was denounced as a failure. Not just once, but multiple times. Simply stated: ABA doesn’t work. In study after repeated study: ABA (conversion therapy) doesn’t work.
What more recent studies do show: Autistics who experienced ABA therapy are at high risk to develop PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions. Historically, the autism organizations promoting ABA as a cure or solution have silenced Autistic advocates’ opposition. ABA is also known as gay conversion therapy.
The ‘cure’ for Autistics not born yet is the prevention of birth.
The ‘cure’ is a choice to terminate a pregnancy based on ‘autism risk.’ The cure is abortion. This is the same ‘cure’ society has for Down Syndrome.
This is eugenics 2021. Instead of killing Autistics and disabled children in gas chambers or ‘mercy killings’ like in Aktion T4, it’ll happen at the doctor’s office, quietly, one Autistic baby at a time. Different approaches yes, but still eugenics and the extinction of an entire minority group of people.
Fact: You can’t cure Autistics from being Autistic.
Fact: You can’t recover an Autistic from being Autistic.
Fact: You can groom an Autistic to mask and hide their traits. Somewhat. … however, this comes at the expense of the Autistic child, promotes Autistic Burnout (this should not be confused with typical burnout, Autistic Burnout can kill Autistics), and places the Autistic child at high risk for PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions.
[Note: Autism is NOT a disease, but a neurodevelopmental difference and disability.]
Fact: Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism.